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School of MedicineUniversity of Washington • Box 357735 • 1705 NE Pacific St • Seattle WA 98195
 

UW CFF RDP Project: Adaptive significance of LasR mutations in CF

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Principal Investigators: Matt Parsek, Ph.D., Lucas Hoffman, M.D., Ph.D.

This pilot builds upon the previous observations made by the Co-PIs that Pseudomonas aeruginosa  lasR mutations are selected for in cystic fibrosis airways and that quorum sensing mutant strains of P. aeruginosa are defective in co-culture interactions with a wide range of species. There are two specific aims. The first is to examine the hypothesis that a lasR mutation confers a growth advantage for P. aeruginosa on amino acids compared to a wild-type strain. The second specific aim will examine potential consequences of lasR mutations for the presence and appearance of other key CF bacterial species. lasR mutant strains will be compared to the wild-type in their ability to compete in vitro with Staphylococcus aureus, Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, and Burkholderia cenocepacia.  Interactions will be monitored both in planktonic and biofilm culture. Our working hypothesis is that the non-Pseudomonas species will achieve higher cell numbers in the co-culture with the lasR mutant strain. This proposal is important for CF in that it will address the adaptive advantage conferred by a lasR mutation and begin to explore the potential consequences of such a mutation on CF microbial ecology.

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Cycstic Fibrosis Foundation University of Washington